ERIC Number: ED350907
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Apr-18
What Students Look for in Course Syllabi.
Zucker, Evan L.
A study was done of college undergraduates' views of course syllabi as syllabi are generally the primary vehicles by which course instructors initially communicate plans, goals, and expectations to students. The study proceeded with an open-ended, one-question survey distributed to students in seven undergraduate classes from four different content areas. The data were collected over a six-semester period and a total of 194 responses were obtained. Of the respondents, juniors and seniors comprised 95 percent of the sample. The procedure for the survey was that in each class the syllabus was distributed on the first day of class with each part explained orally to the students. At the end of this class the survey was distributed and students were asked to complete the following statement: "When I received the course syllabus, the first thing I looked for was..." Responses were tabulated based on the key word or phrase. Results showed that the most prevalent response was that students first looked for examination dates, followed by the number of examinations, and topics covered in the course. This response supports development of a "nutshell" description which students rated favorably. (Four tables are included.) (JB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Southwestern Psychological Association (38th, Austin, TX, April 16-18, 1992).